Do you know? The only two instances of a team reaching their target on the final ball of a Test

Test matches hardly go down to the wire as last-over finishes are a rarity in the game’s longest format. It is a common scenario in limited-overs format, but the result of a Test usually is not decided in the final over of the match. But there have been two such thrillers that ended in not just last over but on the last delivery of the Test.

Let us take a look at the two instances of a side reaching their respective target on the final ball of a Test match:

1. England vs South Africa (1948)

While now standardized at six, in some nations the number of balls bowled per over fluctuated between four and eight in the past. And this was the case in this England-South Africa Test in Durban in 1948, when eight deliveries were bowled per over. The English side toured the Rainbow Nation for a five-match series in the 1948/49 season. The home side batted first in the first game and got bundled out for 161. In reply, the visitors posted 253 on the board in their first innings, taking a lead of 92 runs. The hosts managed to score 219 in their second innings, setting a target of 128. England were 120/8 at the end of the 27th over as they needed eight off the final over. They achieved the target off the final delivery through a leg-bye as they clinched a thriller of a match to win it by two wickets.

2. New Zealand vs Sri Lanka (2023)

Recently, New Zealand became the second Test as repeated the historic moment of winning the clash off the final ball against Sri Lanka. In the first of the two-match series, the tourist batted first at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch and posted 355 on the board. In reply, the hosts managed to reach a total of 373, taking a lead of 18 runs. The visitors made 302 in their second innings courtesy of a century from Angelo Mathews. Chasing 285 for a win, the Kiwis also needed eight off the final over. Kane Williamson smashed a four off the fourth ball and with one needed off the last ball, he scrambled through for a bye as the Blackcaps registered a thrilling victory by a margin of two wickets. Williamson remained unbeaten on 121 as he took his side over the line to clinch the game with the barest of margins